Saturday, May 30, 2009

Seeing August Wilson's Broadway Play with PRESIDENT OBAMA and the FIRST LADY

Academy Award winning actress, Meryl Streep

It was such a thrill to see August Wilson's play called JOE TURNER'S COME AND GONE at the Belasco Theatre last night because PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA and the FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA were in the audience. Due to tight security, the play started late. The President and the First Lady were greeted with thunderous applause (and camera flash) when they entered the small Belasco Theatre, which has just over 1,000 seats. The incessant applause and photographing stopped only when the curtain rose at around 8:50 PM. The show ended at around 11:30 PM. It's been reported that President Obama promised his wife during the campaign that he would take her to a Broadway show after it was all finished. Yesterday's presidential "date" was President Obama's first visit to New York City since he took office. Also spotted in the audience was Academy Award winning actress, MERYL STREEP. 
The play by August Wilson is about black America in the early 1900s, with residents of a boardinghouse recalling their migration from the sharecropping farms of the South to the industrialized North.

Saks Fifth Avenue Windows: A Salute to American Designers

At SAKS FIFTH AVENUE, the current window displays salute some American designers.


These are some of the images I made of the CHARLES ENGELHARD COURT of the newly renovated AMERICAN WING, METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART. After two years of renovation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art recently reopened a major portion of its American Wing, debuting recent acquisitions and a new feel for the light-infused Charles Engelhard Court.
From newyorkology:
There are glass installations from Tiffany & Company, silver from Paul Revere Jr., a Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington, as well as a period room from Frank Lloyd Wright amid the nearly 1,000 works of art now on display.
While the new design allows visitors to get closer to the sculptures, the atrium setting has been replaced by more stone, extra open space and fake foliage. Visitors can still see Central Park on the other side of the wall of glass, but it no longer feels as though the park extends into the museum. Center court is dominated by a cast of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ gilt bronze “Diana,” a half-size replica of the weathervane that sat atop Madison Square Garden (the one demolished in 1925.) Although it’s not the original, it is at least made from a cement cast once owned by architect Stanford White, who gave the Garden weathervane commission to Saint-Gaudens.

The main level remains book-ended by the Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass from his Oyster Bay, Long Island residence and the façade of Martin E. Thompson’s Branch Bank of the United States, originally located at 15-1/2 Wall St.

Behind the bank, visitors will find the revamped period rooms, which are now arranged chronologically if you start on the third floor at the new glass elevator. Lighting has been improved in the period rooms and touch-screens allow guests to focus on individual objects. Of the 19 period rooms, a dozen were renovated and one is new to the museum: the 1751 Daniel Peter Winne house from a location near Albany.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Other Bag

I just can't resist taking a photo of this bag in the window of a neighborhood boutique called SAADA on the Upper Eastside. Saada means happiness in Arabic, and packed as it is with pretty, girlish dresses and accessories, it seems this shop is aptly named. Here you can find the dark-denim True Religion jeans and other brands like Mackage. The boutique is located at 1159 Second Ave., New York, NY 10021 
at 61st St.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

American Idolatry: KRIS ALLEN and ADAM LAMBERT Perform on the Today Show

Adam Lambert singing "Mad World"
Kris Allen

Youtube posted by toandang

American Idol KRIS ALLEN and runner-up ADAM LAMBERT performed earlier this morning at Rockefeller Plaza (48th St. between 5th and 6th Avenues) on the TODAY SHOW. (Images were made from the NBC telecast).

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


I took my first ROOSEVELT ISLAND TRAMWAY ride last week and took photos of the fantastic aerial views. The ride between Manhattan and Roosevelt Island was very short but it was a fun experience.
The 4 minute ride, which offers spectacular views to its passengers, has been praised in the New York Times as "the most exciting view in New York City!" It costs a mere $2.00 each way and students with tram permits ride free. Senior citizens and disabled pay $2.00 round trip.
Over 26 million passengers -- including commuters, tourists, students and seniors have used the tram. Each cabin accommodates a capacity of 125 people, makes approximately 115 trips per day, and about 100 on weekends. It glides at approximately 16 miles per hour and travels 3,100 feet. At its peak it climbs to 250 feet above the East River. Two cabins make the run every fifteen minutes from 6:00am to 2:30am (3:30am on weekends) and continuously during rush hours.
Official website at
General Information For tram information, call 832-4543, Ext. 1
Where to get it TramPlaza is located at 59th Street and Second Avenue in Manhattan. On the island a red minibus meets the tram and takes you throughout the island for 25 cents!
Where it takes you In just four minutes you can travel from busy midtown Manhattan to the quiet, safe and beautiful residential Roosevelt Island. It offers great views, 5 spacious parks, 6 historic landmarks dating from 1796, and the opportunity to visit a limited traffic, mixed income multi-ethnic planned community.
In the Movies The tram has been featured in many motion pictures such as Billy Crystal's "City Slickers" and Sylvester Stallone's "Nighthawks". It is currently featured in a popular attraction at Universal Studios Theme Park in Florida where King Kong "attacks" a tram filled with "passengers." It was also made an appearance in the first "Spiderman" movie.
History The Roosevelt Island tram began operating in 1976. There are 20 other trams operating in the U.S. and Canada but the Roosevelt Island tram is the only aerial commuter tram in the country. Originally built as a temporary means of transportation for island residents by New York State's Urban Development Corporation, it has become a permanent part of the life of the island and a treasure for New Yorkers and visitors throughout the world.

Construction Constructed by Vonroll Ltd of Bern, Switzerland for $5 million. Today the cost would be more than $20 million.

Who runs it The tram is managed by Interfac, a division of JWP on behalf of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation of the State of New York ("RIOC"). RIOC is a state public benefit corporation created in 1984 to run the island's services and complete the island's development.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Jonathan Adler Pottery

These are 2 pieces from the pottery collection of JONATHAN ADLER. Mr. Adler is a potter, an interior decorator and an owner of home furnishing and design stores bearing his name. He is also the head judge on “Top Design,” a reality series on the Bravo network. He graduated from Brown, and he and his partner own a dog named "Liberace."

Monday, May 25, 2009

ROCK OF AGES Cast Performs on the TODAY SHOW

Tony Award nominated singer/actor and AMERICAN IDOL alum CONSTANTINE MAROULIS

The cast of the Tony-nominated Best Musical ROCK OF AGES performed on NBC's "The Today Show" earlier this morning. The company performed three songs as part of the Toyota Concert Series. The cast offered "Don't Stop Believin'", "High Enough", and "Here I Go Again." Co-stars CONSTANTINE MAROULIS (American Idol finalist, fourth season) and AMY SPANGER were also interviewed. Mr. Maroulis earned a TONY AWARD nomination for Best Actor in a Musical. Rock of Ages plays the Brooks Atkinson Theatre.

MEMORIAL DAY: Honoring American Casualties of War

At the Rockefeller Center, the lone American flag flies at half-staff to mark today's observance of MEMORIAL DAY. Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. men and women who died while in the military service. First enacted to honor Union soldiers of the American Civil War (it is celebrated near the day of reunification after the civil war), it was expanded after World War I to include American casualties of any war or military action.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Great White Way Becomes Great Walkway: Broadway Street Closing

Several blocks of Broadway (42nd-47th in Times Square; 33rd-35th in Herald Square) closed to vehicle traffic starting today. This is an experiment that turns the "Great White Way" into pedestrian malls in Mayor Michael Bloomberg's effort to reduce traffic congestion in midtown. The city plans to keep the street closing through the end of the year, and if the experiment works, they could become permanent.


This is a scale model of FALLINGWATER, also known as the Edgar J. Kaufmann Sr. Residence designed by American architect FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT (1867-1959) in 1934 in Mill Run, Pennsylvania. The model is on display at the Museum of Modern Art.
From wikipedia:
The house was built partly over a waterfall in Bear Run at Rural Route 1 in the Mill Run section of Stewart Township, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, in the Laurel Highlands of the Allegheny Mountains.
Hailed by TIME magazine shortly after its completion as Wright's "most beautiful job," the home partly inspired Ayn Rand's novel The Fountainhead, and is listed among Smithsonian magazine's Life List of 28 places "to visit before's too late." Fallingwater was featured in Bob Vila's A&E Network production, Guide to Historic Homes of America. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1966. In 1991, members of the American Institute of Architects named the house the "best all-time work of American architecture" and in 2007, it was ranked twenty-ninth on the list of America's Favorite Architecture according to the AIA.